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The Great Beethoven Stands Alone

January 03, 2008

RPO’s Symphony 101 Explores Beethoven’s Revolutionary “Eroica” Symphony

Rochester, NY – In keeping with the stature of the great Ludwig van Beethoven, the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra will yield its next pair of Symphony 101 concerts entirely to Beethoven’s Symphony No. 3 (“Eroica”) in its year-long examination of the lives and inspiration of some of the world’s greatest composers.  The concerts will take place on Friday, January 25 at 7:30 p.m. at the Performance Hall at Hochstein, and Sunday, January 27 at 2:00 p.m. in the Spencerport High School Auditorium.  (Spencerport location is for this performance only.)

Considered revolutionary in that it broke away from many of the rules of earlier “classical” symphonic form, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 3 advances – through its “heroic” style – both more dramatic and emotional expression than had been employed by his predecessors Haydn and Mozart.  During 1801-02, Beethoven expressed dissatisfaction with his work thus far, promising to “forge a new path” for the future.  Many music historians claim the “Eroica” marks the beginning of that new path.  First performed publicly in 1805, the lengthy four-movement symphony originally was dedicated to Napoleon Bonaparte, but Beethoven removed the dedication when Napoleon crowned himself emperor. 

Music Director Seaman leads these engaging and innovative Symphony 101 concerts that feature discussion, musical examples, selections from significant works and complete pieces.  Following each concert, Mr. Seaman takes questions from the audience. 

General admission tickets for these performances are $22, available online 24/7 at www.rpo.org, by phone (454-2100) in person from the RPO Box Office and at area Wegmans.  A convenience fee may apply.  RPO Box Office hours are Monday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. (non-concert Saturdays, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.). 

The Symphony 101 Series is sponsored by PAETEC Communications, Inc. Additional support for this series is provided by the National Endowment for the Arts and the New York State Music Fund, established by the New York State Attorney General at Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors. RPO performances are made possible in part with grants from the National Endowment for the Arts; the New York State Council on the Arts, a State Agency; the State of New York; Monroe County; and the City of Rochester.

Celebrating its 85th season in 2007-08, the RPO inspires and enriches the community through the art of music.  The Orchestra is passionately dedicated to outstanding musical performance at the highest artistic levels, and has a unique tradition of musical versatility, commitment to music education in the broadest sense and a deep and enduring engagement with the community.  The RPO has been honored with the New York State Governor’s Arts Award and two recent ASCAP awards for adventurous programming.

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